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Environmental Movement Matrix

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Environmental Movement Matrix

Choose five items from the following list and identify their significance during the 1970s:

• Cuyahoga River, OH (Cleveland) fire 1969
• Love Canal
• Silent Spring
• Population Bomb
• Endangered Species Act (1966, 1969, & 1973)
• Clean Water Act (1972, 1977) • Conservationism vs. environmentalism
• Acid rain
• Ozone layer
• Rainforests
• Depletion of fossil fuels
• Climate change

Event Significance
Silent Spring The publication of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring in 1962 marked the beginning of modern environmentalism. Carson, known as the “godmother of modern environmentalism, impacted the American public’s consciousness with her detailed exposition on the dangers of environmental pollution to human health. By examining the ecological impacts of hazardous substances that pollute both the natural and human environments, like pesticides, Carson fundamentally altered the way Americans perceived the environment and the dangers of toxins to themselves.
Conservationism vs. environmentalism By the 1870s, resource exploitation dominated development patterns in the West. Natural resources were devoured by destructive practices in mining, overgrazing, timber cutting, monocrop planting, and speculation in land and water rights. In 1902, for example, the Reclamation Act established the Reclamation Service, whose mission was to accomplish “the reclamation and settlement of the arid lands. The Reclamation Service promoted scientific methods like irrigation, storage, power generation, and flood control. Its emergence as a key institution in western resource development signified a policy shift towards scientifically-based resource management and away from the resource exploitation associated with land monopolization and private resource development
Love Canal Love Canal was a housing development built on a landfill operated by the Hooker Chemical Company, which had been dumping highly toxic industrial chemicals into the landfill for several decades. The health impacts on the local residents were severe. Children complained of burning feet while playing barefoot in their yards, many residents had skin irritations, and pets lost their fur.
Clean Water Act (1972, 1977) These laws regulated public drinking water systems, toxic substances, pesticides, and ocean dumping; and protected wildlife, wilderness, and wild and scenic rivers. Moreover, the new laws provide for pollution research, standard setting, contaminated site cleanup, monitoring, and enforcement.

Endangered Species Act (1966, 1969, & 1973) Is one of the dozens of United States environmental laws passed in the 1970s. Signed into law by President Richard Nixon on December 28, 1973, it was designed to protect critically imperiled species from extinction as a "consequence of economic growth and development untempered by adequate concern and conservation."


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